Welcome to the Cake Decorators Q&A
Hello, I am attempting to make Pauls butterfly on the spring cake I found a template I like printed it but I am finding it difficult to handle the paste. I have made it a couple of inches bigger than Pauls template. What medium would be best suited for a large piece. I used Saracino, then tried half sugar paste and half Saracino, both were quite difficult to handle, Paul used flower paste but I don't have any of that at the moment. I wanted it thin and delicate and able to frill. is there a mix of pastes that would handle easier or adding gum or tylose may do the trick. It is warm here that may have been the problem.
Adding tylose or gum tragacanth to your paste will help firm it up and make it easier to handle. Tylose will activate immediately, gum tragacanth needs around twelve hours to activate properly. You could also try air-drying the piece for a few minutes before handling it. I tend to roll out on a dab of cornflour in warmer weather as it helps to draw the moisture out of the paste.
If you'd like to have a go at making your own flower paste or similar mediums, take a peek here:
For other mediums, there are loads of youtube tutorials on piping butterflies with royal icing, chocolate, cake lace and also using wafer paper. Just different ideas which might be useful. 🙂
Hi miwl, thanks for your suggestions, I tried again today 3rd time lucky, and also put two wires through the body to help support the weight , one problem was when you bend it to put it in the former so the wings are at an angle it weakens the whole structure, I think the weather didn't help, as yesterday it was humid even though I used cornflour. Good thing I am trying this before a customer asks for one. I will try flower paste as well to see the difference.
Thank you for taking the time to give your feedback.
Flower paste will definitely try quicker for you and may well be lighter in weight as it can rolled out so much thinner.
I might have a go making it myself this weekend. I did also mean to say, when I was making bigger pieces to stick on cakes, I used to use my chocolate cold spray to help secure the piece. It works just as on fondant as it does on chocolate. 🙂